This paper examines an indigenous community’s perception of community-based tourism (CBT), using the revised social exchange theory (SET) that recognizes the limits of rationality in explaining behaviour and therefore integrates other exchange rules. Unlike most quantitative SET studies that describe residents’ perception without explaining the root cause; this qualitative study investigates prior conditioning from socio-cultural background and potential biased information processing as the underlying reasons of residents’ perception. An indigenous community’s negative perception may be caused by long standing disruption of livelihood from human-wildlife conflict and other non-tourism causes. Livelihood losses aggravate socio-economic deprivations and magnify the expectation for income replacement, such that where tourism income is inadequate, the perceived costs of tourism is amplified. Managing income expectation is therefore crucial in CBT planning. An over-optimistic representation of CBT as a source of livelihood may diminish the role of tourism in conservation conflict management.
- Community-based tourism
- conservation conflict management
- human-wildlife conflict
- residents’ perception
- social exchange theory